Page images


the sea from Santa Barbara. This is ing. It was from Piedmont (Italy) and owned by Italian-Swiss, and is probably the University of Turin that Mr. Pietro more like an Old World vineyard than any C. Rossi, President of the Italian-Swiss in the United States. The vines are trained Colony, brought his scientific knowledge on trellises after the manner in vogue in of grape-growing and wine-making, in the wine-growing districts of Europe; the which his ancestors had been engaged for principal house is of the French balconied generations. The vintage in an Italian type common in New Orleans, and wine-growing district lasts two weeks, and French horn calls the pickers from the as all the grapes in that region must be vineyard at meal time. A little chapel gathered in that time, nearly the whole and a quaint sựn-dial are further remind- rural population--men, women and childers of an old European country. The end

ren- engages in grape-picking. The vineless chain, on which the grapes are con- yards present scenes of great activity and veyed to the presses, seems like an Ameri- gayety. The girls and women employed can device. The marc, as

the refuse in grape-picking in Italy get small wages. stems, seeds and skins are termed, is In the north of Italy, much white wine is thrown out into the yard adjoining the grown, to be made into sparkling (or, as brick winery and fills the air with a pe- the Italians call it, spumante—foaming) culiar odor.

wine, for which only the virgin juice is In the Italian vineyards the grape-vines used. The residue, after the virgin juice are trained on trellises (as in the vine- has been extracted, is left in tanks to feryard on Santa Cruz Island, California), ment with a little water, and produces a and it is necessary to use ladders in gather- cheap wine of inferior quality; this is ing the clusters. The pickers are women called picquette, and is the drink of the and children, who perform their tasks peasants. For in Italy everybody drinks with much more gentleness and care than wine—the rich, those in moderate circumthe laborers in a Californian vineyard stances, and the poor: yes, even the very display. The bunches of grapes are placed poor. Stupendous, almost incredible, in wicker baskets, which are carried on the quantities of wine are made in Italy. The heads of the women or the shoulders of production in 1907 was estimated at one men to the press. In a small vineyard in billion four hundred and ninety-five mila district into which modern methods lion gallons; and, since little Italian wine have not yet been introduced, the press is exported to other countries, nearly all is merely a shallow wooden box, nearly this was consumed by the Italians themsquare, into which the grapes are emptied, selves. Pretty hard drinkers, you say. Not and are then crushed by treading them at all: wine-drinking peoples like the Italwith the feet in the manner often spoken ians and French are the most temperate in of in the Bible, and still followed in Ori- the world. In the picquette drunk by the ental countries. The press is set on a poor there is only six to eight per cent roller over two big casks, so that it in- of alcohol, Wine is rarely drunk unclines to one or the other as the man diluted, but commonly in the proportion changes his position: the juice, as it is of one-third water to two-thirds wine. It expressed, running into the casks. After cannot be too strongly impressed upon the the juice has been extracted, the crushed advocates of national sobriety that skins and seeds are emptied into barrels, nation of wine drinkers is a temperate which are carried away in a two-wheeled nation; cases of alcoholism are almost unbullock cart, as shown in one of the pho- known among people who, from child. tographs. In larger vineyards, hand- hood, have been accustomed to drink light presses, operated by a screw, are used to wines with their food. The greatest hope crush the grapes. Though primitive and of making the American nation a temperrude methods prevail largely all ate one lies in the spread of the habit of Italy, some of the great establishments, drinking wine at meal-time, instead of owned by rich vineyardists, have hydrau- taking cocktails before, and raw whisky lic presses and employ modern machinery, after dinner. This habit would ultimateas well as scientific methods of wine-mak- ly make of the American a temperate race.



[graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors]

The vines in Italian vineyards are trellised, and ladders have to be used to

gather the crop.





[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

O FENTON, in the hot corner included the whole of the curbless street

of the Golden West Hotel porch, that began in the midst of the prairie, held
hastened the girl school teacher a narrow way between tentative buildings,
of Brave Bull Creek.

and finally tapered out into the west-
"He is coming now," she announced, bound trail.
"and I want you to look at him.”

"I've longed for years to come here," Fenton rose to offer her the sag-seated she continued. was not intended to rocker, and perched upon the worn rail live in the East. Why, everything in me beside it.

is primitive-primitive," she repeated. “Now who,” he drawled lazily, "might “Don't you feel that way yourself? Oh, you have in mind when

you must have, or you wouldn't have come “Hush !” she implored. “Oh, you here to make your way.” know! I described him last evening. Oh, Fenton turned from her fresh face and there! Oh, isn't it warm to-day.” Her gazed toward the low, unclouded sun. Invoice trailed off into the conventional. to the shadow of the hotel porch a young

Fenton, turning with precarious care- Indian stumbled lazily, and sitting upon lessness on the rail, saw a

tall, dark

the sand, relaxed into instant sleep. A skinned ranger lift his hat and bow with half dozen rangers clattered by on dusty sinuous grace. Typical in face and bear- ponies. The swaying doors of a saloon ing, but extreme in dress, he strode on, his across the way let out a laughing group. spurs clicking softly in the quiet street, A work train jolted in over the new road. his supple shoulders undulating under a His gaze returned to the girl. “I rather silken shirt.

believc," he said smilingly, that the primFenton grinned, and turned again to the itives have been thrust upon me. girl. “Stunner, isn't he?” he indulged I've been a year or so learning to hold my her.

own among 'em. The wild in me," he “Isn't he?” she sighed, softly; "and so continued, “comes only in response to call interesting,” she continued. "He told me -an urgent call for coin; butter, you about a bear hunt he was on last winter." know, and bread."

“Bear?” asked Fenton. “Must have And then he went away to interview the borrowed him from a circus. There hasn't foreman of the work train. been any bear about here in ten years.” A week later he returned from a survey

Miss Clayton looked hurt. "But you at the end of the new road that was pushdon't know, you've only just come your- ing westward under his guidance, and self.”

found his place at the hotel table usurped Fenton smiled into her troubled eyes. by the swaggering hero of Miss Clayton's Her short skirt and high shoes were obvi- eulogy. From a neighboring table, thereously new, and he hated them. But her fore, he ate his fried steak and waved away bright hair still curled as in New Eng- the busy fly, while Miss Clayton suspended land fogs, her skin was not yet tanned, and her biscuit in mid-air, and the hero deher soft blouses had a daintiness of lace tailed his exploits. Fenton saw, also, with that spelled the East to Fenton's longing. regret, that Miss Clayton's hands were

"Doesn't a year count?” he asked. growing brown, and that her dainty nose

But she returned to her favorite theme was sunburned. of the West. "It's so splendid here, isn't That evening he encountered the hero it?" she continued, and her white hands in a saloon. Blewett sa him enter, and

In fact,

[ocr errors]


instantly advanced
upon him. “Look Fenton, instantly awake,


listened. here," he said ; "I saw you looking at her Horses stamped gently beneath his winto-night again, and I won't have it; you dow. Beyond, some one stumbled as upon understand? I won't have it."

strange ground, and low talking was sudFenton drew back a little. "Gently, my denly hushed. Fenton shot out of bed son,” he said. “Have you filed that claim and began to hunt for his clothes, as the yourself? I haven't seen notice."

memory of Blewett flashed into his mind. Blewett hesitated a moment under the “Get your rags and come on," he whisengineer's gentle banter. “Yes, I have," pered fiercely to Halland. ,

“Here, take he said, finally, "and you'll keep off - this gun. Get up, I tell you, and hurry.”

Astounded, Halland began to dress, Fenton removed his hat and turned it while Fenton's explanation came in synabout idly. “So ?” he said, still gently. thesis.

thesis. “Girl," he whispered. “East"Drink?"

romantic-Blewett-half breed-foolBlewett scowled, then nodded to Fen- oh, Lord! hurry up." " ton's “twice.”

The halls and stairs eaked beneath The incipient crowd dispersed at the their stealthy feet. Failing to open the sign of peace, and Blewett's enmity hast- door they climbed through an office winend to obliterate itself. He became friend- dow into the porch shadow. The delay ly, chummy, communicative, and into was costly, for with sudden whirl a small Fenton's ears poured the tale of his love. group of horsemen clattered. past them She had refused him, to be sure. Fenton and broke into a gallop in the open road. felt an unaccountable relief. But he was Two of thein guarded one between, and determined. He encircled Fenton's shoul- Fenton lowered his rifle with a catching ders with a heavy arm, and recounted Miss breath. “They've got her,” he said, “the Clayton's charms. "She also loves the fools! the fools! Come on; we've got to West,” he said, "and the adventures, the stop 'em. Come on!” romance, the primitive. I have told her Together they ran down the street. The of the raid at Rixman's, and she early moon had set, but the stars shone thrilled. Yes. And now we shall have above the dust cloud still in the motionanother raid. To-morrow night it is to less air. From the stable corral they took be. Fortunately Terrill of the bar O is two surprised bronchos, made quick work in. I have told the boys that I humor her of saddling and were off. to make the romance for her, and they, too, will assist.”

Now, when the gentle young Father Half incredulous, half apprehensive, Mulholland set out to make his annual Fenton listened while Blewett rambled on summer visit to his Indian mission at Big until his tongue slipped gently into a Moose Bend, he sighed with relief when sibilant speech like that of his mother's he heard that the new railroad had been mother, who had been a squaw.

pushed on nearly two hundred miles At last Fenton shook himself free and westward. He hated to travel by wagon. escaped, to grow calm under the cool night But now he had been many hours on this sky.

erratic young road with its exceedingly At the hotel, he found his newly arrived old cars, and he had learned that every assistant, Halland, awaiting him-bluff curve held possibilities of delay. Ha! of his college days, and so hungry The morning was young when the sharp was he for his own kind that the surprise jolting of the brakes awoke him. From .almost unnerved him.

the window he saw only the lineless gray After the night of reunion and reminis- prairie, and he lifted his large frame paincence, they made early start for the road's fully from among the angles of the elonend. Late into the following night they gated chair. At the door he met a hurstudied plans and technicalities, and Fen- rying man with a green-eyed lantern. ton had but fallen asleep when Halland “That's right," said the man—“come on, roused him. “What in thunder is going you’re wanted, quick.” on down below, Fen?” he asked. “Lis- “There is trouble?” he asked, startled. ten!”

“Yes, trouble," replied the brakeman


[ocr errors]


angrily. "It's that crazy bar 0 gang Terrill nodded toward the station. Fenagain. They've hung us up here about a ton sprang forward and Blewett met him dozen times since we started running at the door, his dark face flushed and ugly. here. They've held us up fer fun, and Terrill's arm shot out, and Fenton's gun they have stolen our engine when they fell harmlessly. A dozen men sprang forwanted to get to town sudden. They ward to separate them. The bar O's were greased our rails when we had the chief not out for murder. Suddenly the group himself on—and now it's wedding. parted and the girl slipped through to They're clean crazy, them cow-punchers." Fenton, and hid her sobs shamelessly in A yell greeted the perturbed Father as

his arms. he made his way hesitatingly in the early Instantly rose a surprised and laughing light toward the station house. Blewett's cheer, and eager hands pushed forward the party was re-inforced, and the bar 0 was bewildered priest. full of joy. The conductor, backed up “My boy,” said he to the breathless Fenagainst the station, swore steadily at the ton, "does she wish to marry you ?” grinning men whose guns were quick and Fenton gasped, and the bar O's anhandv.

swered as one man, for they were out for Inside the station, Blewett bent, with a wedding. Halland, too, saw light. He ill-concealed fury, over a white-faced girl. turned to the Father. “This—this vilUntouched by romance, and unbending be- lain," he indicated Blewett, "tried to abneath his eager eyes, she threatened to duct her.” bring unstinted ridicule upon him. Even The Father understood. Gently he with the good Father almost at hand, she disengaged Miss Clayton from Fenrefused steadily to marry.

ton's arms.

“There, there!” he said, Furiously he tramped the tiny room. "calm yourself.” He turned, towering “But I tell you, you must,” he said, stop- with youthful dignity, to the excited ping before her, "and

crowd. "Silence," he said. "My friends, A noise of hoofs made him turn. At this is a strange place for a marriage, but the platform, two dust-white men flung since these young people are determined,” themselves from horses, and faced the he turned again, and Fenton, standing in idling crowd with guns. For an astonished the pale sunlight, looked up from

the moment no one spoke, and Fenton's quick girl's face and made answer: eves recognized Terrill. “Where is Blew- “We are quite determined, Father," he ett, Terrill ?” he asked.







Sweet Santa Clara, mistress of the sun,
Who woos you daily with his ardent rays
And sends for gift his genial golden days,
With tribute fruitage from the dark earth won,
The swift glad days shed perfume as they run
And reil you in an amethystine haze
Of violets, wistaria, a maze
Of bloom in auric mesh by sun's love spun.
When thoughts stray back to you, dear vale of light,
And dreams of magic hours in you passed by
Possess me with their mystic reveries,
I yearn to thread once more your meadows bright,
Among your golden poppy beds to lie,
And hear the gallant sun's love-symphonies.

« PreviousContinue »